Guys, it’s the 18th! We’re over halfway there! My writing companion Aragorn (look at that face) has now finally realized that he can’t actually type, so thankfully he is now content to simply watch me.
So, even though I’m way behind on my personal goal for the month and will probably not make it, that’s okay because a) I’ve now written 31,000 more words than I ever have in a month’s time, and b) I’ve actually been writing every day, even if it’s only 727 words like yesterday. The discipline of writing daily has always been a struggle for me, even during NaNoWriMo, so this is kind of a big deal. My recent search history also includes such fascinating tidbits as the Mary Celeste, black spiced rum recipes, pub crawl (I forgot to add the ‘wordcount‘ part to it), and how to make bumbo. Things always get interesting in November, and Google possibly now thinks that I’m an alcoholic who lives in a shack on the beach and sees sea monsters and pirates on a regular basis. My friend sent this to me on Pinterest and I find it rather fitting:
I’m sure we can all relate! Anyway, my tip for the next portion of NaNo is this: Do not be afraid to write badly. Because, really, it might end up not being bad after all, or at the very least it might end up being salvageable. So don’t not write because you’re afraid it isn’t going to be pretty. Just write.
And now for some snippets.
Snippet 1: A man receives a message from Cahmeelle.
Just then the cry of a hawk lifted him out of the mire of this dark thoughts and he looked up to see the bird descending from the sky. He recognized it; the bird was Cahmeelle’s, and she used it often to send messages, especially urgent ones she did not want anyone else reading. The hawk landed on his shoulder and the two exchanged pleasantries, and then the man took the message from the hawk’s foot.
“Going,” it read in elegant script. “Danger.”
He frowned. What on earth did that mean? What sort of danger? He knew short messages were necessary, but for the love of all things, could she not embellish a little? “What does she mean?” he asked the bird.
“She would not say, my lord. She simply rolled up the message and told me I was to stay with you for a time.”
The man sighed. “Typical,” he muttered, increasing his pace. “And I suppose I am to simply guess, then? She must know that in these times she cannot be so vague.”
“Perhaps,” said the hawk very cautiously, “she was afraid.”
“On my last flight back to her, I was nearly captured by one of Tsifira’s griffins. They patrol the skies looking for me. Perhaps she thought that Tsifira might get hold of the message somehow and did not want to divulge more than necessary.”
The man looked with some admiration at the bird. “You do not seem afraid.”
“Neither do you, my lord.”
The man smiled sadly and stroked the bird’s head. “Fools who hope against hope have no time for fear,” he replied.
“Quite so,” the bird agreed and then busied himself picking at his feathers.
Snippet 2: Elizabeth’s nightmares.
“It took you long enough,” said the horse.
Surprised, I stared at him. Had he spoken? Impossible.
“There is blood on your hands,” he remarked.
I looked down and saw that he was right; both of my hands were soaked in blood, dripping with it, and the ground soaked it up thirstily. Where was it coming from? I did not feel pain or appear to be wounded. But there seemed to be an endless supply of it.
Come back, the wind whispered, and the hair on the back of my neck raised as goosebumps covered my body. Come back. Come back, it begged mournfully. I gripped my sword more tightly instinctively and felt its power roll through my body, as though it were alive in and of itself. I looked down at it, frowning. It grew warm beneath my hand. Come back. What once was lost is restored. What once was stolen has been returned. Come back. Blood was bubbling up from the ground now, and it was as though veins beneath the earth had been opened up and they were bleeding profusely. I jumped to my feet and tried to get clear of it, but soon there were streams of it everywhere, flooding the clearing and rushing off into the forest with a sickening gurgling noise. Come back. Come back. I raised my sword and looked into the forest. Steeling myself, and ready for anything, I plunged ahead into the darkness, while the gentle wind grew ever more insistent. Come back. Come back…